Managing serial numbers for individual macOS virtual machines

In 2020, MacStadium partnered with Jamf to provide a way to spin up Mac virtual machines for JNUC attendees to use in the conference’s Interactive Labs, being held entirely online due to the pandemic. The Jamf team needed to assign a macOS serial number to each VM so that the VM could be enrolled with Jamf device management.

MacStadium built a custom solution on their Orka virtualization platform where a serial number provided by Jamf would be “baked in” to a Docker image used by an Orka cluster. This solution worked well, and the conference was a huge success. Following JNUC, an internal Jamf team wanted similar functionality for another use case and worked with MacStadium again. This time, the Orka team took this partnered solution and created a new feature whereby a custom serial number can be assigned per VM (as opposed to the previous implementation which was per cluster). This permanent feature was made publicly available in Orka 1.6 for any IT or development team working with macOS VMs for device enrollment or other use cases where dedicated serial numbers are required. In this session, Spike Burton, MacStadium’s Senior Software Developer who worked on the project, will share the case study and provide best practices for orchestrating macOS VMs.